Today’s Crosstalk issues both a warning and a challenge.
Do your kids play video games? Are you aware of the kind of games that they are playing? Very sadly, the industry has gone a long, long way away from simple games on computers like baseball or football. The game Jim brings to the forefront of the conversation today is called ‘Fortnite Battle Royale’ an online game phenomenon that reportedly boasts 150 million players. Technology is even making it possible for crowds to gather in living rooms to watch players participate worldwide. Fortnite Battle Royale will not cost you anything initially as a free computer download. Yet with stories and statistics out (such as you will hear on today’s Crosstalk) one has to wonder just what the high price to play actually is.
The object of Fortnite is a survival of the fittest. The game begins with 100 online players who skydive onto a large island and begin looking for supplies (they arrive with nearly nothing). Players must search the island for guns, supplies and other raw materials which they can use to build ‘makeshift fortifications.’ As time passes, the island boundaries begin to erode forcing players closer and closer together in proximity where then, a ‘battle Royale’ ensues. The last player (or team) alive wins.
But really, what do they win?
Crosstalk discusses the violent thinking required to actually play this game. Proponents say that Fortnite is ‘bloodless and cartoonish’ yet, in order to survive, players must shoot to kill other players with the guns they acquire. While hearts pound and adrenaline flows, a victor is crowned who gets bragging rights and the thrilling opportunity to encourage others to play the game that celebrates death. Many are saying that Fortnite Battle Royale has a seductive and addictive nature which has even found it’s way into our nation’s schools. It’s been reported that several schools have had their WiFi networks so bogged down (due to so many playing online) that it could not keep up, forcing many schools to enforce a complete ban of the game. Many other threats are involved with Fortnite Battle Royale, including sexual predators who are also online playing, hoping to engage young people in online chatrooms; hence possibly using the game to lure children.
Along with taking calls from Crosstalk listeners, Jim shares testimonies and Scripture to help parents in understanding the many dangers aimed at our kids today through violent game playing.